Adopting human rights- based approach to counteract trafficking in women; a case study of Uganda

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Kampala International University; School of Law
Trafficking in persons which is akin to contemporary slavery is highly prevalent across the world. It is affecting thousands of persons in all corners of the globe. While men and boys can be exposed to trafficking, the women and girls constitutes a significant majority of victims of trafficking. Uganda is among source countries of many women and girls exposed to trafficking. Each year thousands of Ugandan women and girls are trafficked across international border to mainly Middle East countries for labor and sexual exploitation purposes. Ugandan women are subjected to multiple human rights abuses in destination countries. Thus, this thesis seeks to examine the violation of women rights and advocacy tools or measures adopted in Uganda to counteract trafficking in women. The study identifies that there are two dominant approaches to counteract trafficking in persons including women trafficking. These are: criminal justice approach and human rights based approach ant trafficking response. It argues that criminal justice approach which views trafficking as crime and immigration issues resolvable by prosecution of traffickers alone is losing currency. It fails mainly to address the root causes trafficking in persons in addition to lack of protection to victims of trafficking {VaT). As a result, human rights based approach that considers trafficking in women as human rights issues deeming a human rights oriented interventions is gaining ground in anti-trafficking discourses. The study addresses not only the process and consequences of trafficking but also it seeks to dismantle the structural root causes such as poverty, lack of education, unemployment and discrimination against women that feed trafficking in women. Accordingly, anti-trafficking encompasses prosecution of trafficking cases, protection of VaT and prevention of trafficking in holistic manner. Thus, the purpose of this research is to assess whether anti trafficking adopted in Uganda are in line with human rights based approach standards. The thesis reveals that while there are some positive initiatives and efforts, anti-trafficking measures adopted in Uganda fall short of Human Rights Based Approach anti-trafficking standards. The lack of legislative, policy and institutional frameworks coupled with deficiencies in prosecution, protection and prevention strategies prove this assertion. Therefore, it is a high time to adopt A Human Rights Based Approach anti trafficking response in the country to see the effective and meaningful eradication of the trafficking in women. Key terms; trafficking in persons, women, criminal justice approach, human rights, a human rights based approach, prosecution, protection, prevention, victims of trafficking
A research report submitted to the School of Law in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the Award of the Degree of Bachelor of Laws of Kampala International University
Adopting human rights- based approach, Counteract trafficking in women, Uganda